Last week the Patriots steamrolled the Bears, but this time around the Patriots have a tough match-up when they face the Denver Broncos in Foxboro.
Where to start? Brady vs Manning, Welker vs the Pats, there’s so many options. The biggest one I see is Manning’s arm vs the cold temperature and the Patriots secondary. It’s supposed to be really cold in New England, even to the point of snow being in the forecast. Everyone talks about how Manning doesn’t have the same zip on the ball anymore, and a cold, windy and wet night won’t be doing him any favors.
The biggest person-to-person match-ups are D. Thomas vs Revis and Sanders vs Browner. If both corners do what they were brought here to do the Patriots should be fine. However, that is going to be a big task. Another match-up to keep an eye on is probably going to be Talib vs. Gronk. They’ll have Talib shadow Gronk if they know what’s good for them. That hopefully will open things up for LaFell and Edelman.
I think the Broncos running game will have a big day; Ronnie Hillman has been turning out 100 yard rushing games consistently ever since he stepped in for the injured M. Ball. I don’t think the same can be said for the Patriot’s running backs. Sure, Vereen will be a big part of the game, but he’ll see more receiving attempts than rushing attempts. Gray will carry the ball for a few times, but I think the Patriots will have to abandon the run by half.
I also think both QBs will have decent numbers by the end of it all. Brady will be harassed more than Manning for sure, but Brady will still find a way to scratch and claw the Patriots back into it.
As much as I want Brady to light up the scoreboard and drive the Broncos into the dirt, I don’t think it’s going to happen. Manning has too much talent to work with. Brady, yet again, doesn’t have anywhere near the talent around him Manning does. I think the Broncos win this one pretty handedly, but hell; Brady always seems to find a way to beat Manning in the last moments of the game. I guess we’ll see what happens.